Revelation 14:2 (ESV) … “And I heard a voice from heaven like the roar of many waters and like the sound of loud thunder. The voice I heard was like the sound of harpists playing on their harps…”
The picture that has unfolded thus far in the Apocalypse is that of a world ruined by man. As the seals have been broken and restraint removed, passions in the human heart, long restrained by God, have been allowed to come to full flower and fruit. The harvest has been one of complete chaos on earth. With the blowing of the trumpets, the picture has taken on the even darker hue of a world ruled by Satan. Satanic power has been unleashed, and the evil one’s plans for the subjugation of the race have been allowed to mature. The world has united beneath the banner of the Beast. He has been hailed as messiah, and worship has been offered both to him and the dragon. Satan’s schemes have been allowed at long last to reach this high tide mark.
With chapter 14 there comes a change and a turning of the tide. The ebb sets in and flows faster and ever faster, as God takes over in direct and determined intervention in the affairs of men. From here on, we have set before us a picture of a world rescued by God. This is a long section of the book and covers a very long period of time. It runs on to the end of chapter 20, and thus covers the final throes of the Great Tribulation, the Battle of Armageddon, the golden millennial age, the final rebellion of Satan, the great white throne judgment, and on to the edge of eternity.
The book of Revelation, so full of sorrow, strife, and tears, is also a book filled with song! Bring the Lamb into the picture, and immediately there is song! The Lord has an amazing ability to make His people happy. One of the wonders of the God of the Bible is that He is a happy God!
The gods of the pagans are fierce, wicked, and cruel, delighting in the tears and tremblings of men and feasting on human fear. But our God is a happy God. He picks us up from the horrible pit. plants our feet upon the rock, and puts a new song into our mouth. One of the greatest lessons we can learn in life is simply that there can be no real happiness apart from true holiness. God is altogether holy; therefore He is altogether happy.
In Revelations 14:2 we see, when we are filled with the Spirit, we sing! (Ps. 40:2–3; Eph. 5:18–19). This exalted company of God’s people is also an exultant company. They fill the courts of heaven with their song until the very hills thunder back the sound.